It’s that time of year, when Forbes collects last year’s tax returns and figures out who made what in WWE. The list of highest paid WWE superstars from 2015 to 2016 didn’t see too many changes in terms of who made the top 10, as only Big Show and Kane fell out of the top 10 from last year’s list.
However, there were some shakeups for various reasons within the top 10, most notably John Cena losing his top spot to Brock Lesnar, thanks in large part to Cena’s absences with injury and filming outside of WWE and Lesnar’s participation in UFC 200. Forbes estimated that Lesnar earned as much from his UFC 200 purse ($2.5 million) and split of the PPV buys as he did for all of his WWE earnings. In total, Lesnar earned $12 million in 2016. Do you know how many Jimmy John’s sandwiches you can get for $12 million? Like, at least 1.2 million.
The other big moves from 2015 to 2016 include Dean Ambrose, who went from 10th to 5th, with a $1.6 million increase in earnings to $2.7 million. Roman Reigns also saw his earnings go up, as he made $1.4 million more in 2016 thanks to being the No. 2 in merchandise sales behind Cena. AJ Styles and Shane McMahon are the two newcomers to the list. Both cracked the $2 million mark in 2016, as Styles debuted with WWE and McMahon made his return to the company.
Here is the full top 10, courtesy of Forbes:
1. Brock Lesnar – $12 million
2. John Cena – $8 million
3. Triple H – $ 3.8 million
4. Roman Reigns – $3.5 million
5. Dean Ambrose – $2.7 million
6. AJ Styles – $2.4 million
7. Shane McMahon – $2.2 million
8. The Undertaker – $2 million
9. Seth Rollins – $2 million
10. Randy Orton – $1.9 million